The immediate past Cross River State Resident Electoral Commissioner (REC), Dr Frankland Briyia, Wednesday, dismissed claims that he was sacked by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), saying instead that the electoral body lacked the unilateral powers to sack him.
Describing his media report that he was sacked by the commission as ‘fake news’, the former REC said he duly resigned his appointment as REC Cross River to join partisan politics and participate in the forthcoming governorship election in Bayelsa State.
Briyia, who made the revelation at the APC secretariat in Yenagoa, where he formally collected his expression of interest and nomination forms, said he had informed the INEC of his decision.
“No, INEC did not say so. INEC never meant to say so. I officially and legally resigned my appointment and INEC will attest to that. Let me state this. The REC is nominated by the President and the President sends the nominees to the Senate.
“The Senate screens them and if they’re found worthy confirms them and sends them to the President and the President eventually gives them appointments. The moment the appointment is given to the REC and the REC does anything wrong, INEC will investigate and sends its reports and makes its recommendation of what will happen to the REC whether he will be disciplined or not to the President.
“If the President and his team actually investigate and if he sees that what the REC has done actually contravenes the code of conduct, he will send the report to the Senate. The Senate will debate it, if the two-third majority of the Senate finds what the REC wrong, the Senate will rectify it and send it back to the President.
“It thereafter the President only, can sanction the REC. I have contacted INEC headquarters and the news about my sack is fake news. INEC said they didn’t say a thing like that. I’m sure you have watched or maybe read INEC publication, you won’t find anything like sack because I resigned officially.
“My departure created a vacuum and in INEC tradition the moment there’s no REC the administrative secretary takes over, that was what INEC meant. INEC doesn’t mean that I was sacked. So, don’t misquote INEC”.
He promised to turn around the fortunes of the state if gets the party ticket and eventually the mandate to govern the state.